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Updated: May 10, 2022

Most of the time, when we take clients through our two-step process of getting their first house market ready and their second house personalized to their tastes and lifestyle, the overall design style remains the same. In the case of Heather and Julien’s home transformation though, we were able to completely change things up when they asked that their new home be made into a chic boho-style cottage home.

To start, we had to get their current (“Step 1”) home ready for market. This home had been purchased by the couple as a “fixer-upper” home with lots of renovation projects to be done. But with a growing family and the pressures of everyday life, a lot of those projects had to be postponed to a later date. However, as most parents will agree, these “later dates” become truly difficult to find as time goes on! This is when our team steps in...

The first and most important change that had to take place in Heather and Julien’s house to prepare it for sale involved repairing a plumbing issue with a collapsed drain outside the home. These types of repairs may not help in improving the overall aesthetic of the house but they are crucial to selling your home - especially in the competitive market we were currently working in.

As the plumbing work began, the rest of the home needed just a few changes to become sale ready. Decluttering would take place first because as Mary always tells clients, buyers need to be able to imagine themselves in your home. This ability to imagine yourself in a home is a more challenging task when the original homeowner’s belongings are cluttered throughout the space.

"This ability to imagine yourself in a home is a more challenging task when the original homeowner's belongings are cluttered throughout the space."

After some decluttering, we also decided to change the layout of the overall home. The way rooms were set up, the home was a bit of a labyrinth. With just a few small changes, Mary was able to come up with a brand new floor plan. This new plan created a main bedroom suite from what was once a garage conversion, complete with its own closet space and bathroom. It also included two bedrooms on the other side of the house, connected with a Jack-and-Jill bathroom, and a new formal dining room and dedicated living space.

After a fresh coat of paint and some updated lighting, the home was almost complete. We often remind families as they prepare to sell a home, the importance and value of some updated light fixtures. In the case of Heather and Julien’s home, we knew what a transformation light could make. With just a few pieces from Kichler Lighting, we were able to make several rooms in the house look bright, modern, and sophisticated, while keeping a bit of the retro style that was already found in the decor. With older fluorescent lights removed and new Kichler Lighting installed, we were ready for the final step before a home is put on the market: staging.

Each room in Heather and Julien's house was staged according to the new floor plan, with a mix of new and old items. These items were used to bring every room together in a way that looked homey, but still clean and organized. In the end, the once cluttered space was bright, open, and ready to welcome a new family!

With all of the updates in the floor plan, decor, and repairs, Heather and Julien’s house was listed and then sold within just five days. From there, we were able to get right to work personalizing their new home.

In the new house, there were a few updates that had to take place in order to modernize the space. Other updates were also planned, in order to personalize the overall look. To start, the house as a whole was painted in Sherwin William’s Alabaster. Then, the more detailed projects could begin…

The kitchen saw what was probably the largest renovation, with new countertops being installed, as well as a new tile backsplash, a new vent hood, and some new appliances. The overall color scheme was brought together by the beautiful kitchen tile, which pulled soft pinks and natural browns into a subtle, beautiful pattern. These colors were not only favorites for our client, they were also reminiscent of Heather’s New Mexican roots.

"These colors were not only favorites for our client, they were also reminiscent of Heather's New Mexican roots."

As a complement to this personalized color scheme, we installed new countertops in the kitchen and made sure the cabinets were given a fresh coat of paint (using Sherwin Williams Pinky Beige). Next came new hardware to update the look and as a finishing touch, the dining area was set up with a bright and stylish light fixture.

In the living room, we decided to update the look of the fireplace by smoothing it out with a layer of concrete and the addition of a natural wood mantel. For this, we called our friends at the Reclaimed Wood Shop (RWS) in Houston Texas. The Reclaimed Wood Shop is known for their large, hollow mantles and beams that provide the beauty of natural materials, without adding the overwhelming weight of solid wood. Their hollow mantles can be made to look totally unique too, with varying levels of distress and shades of wood stain.

As we started work smoothing out the fireplace, the team from RWS came in to take measurements and discuss the piece with Mary. Once this piece of the project was ready, they came in and installed the mantle so that all that was left was some minor staging. This piece, coupled with the new rounded edges and a more natural feel on the fireplace, made the corner of the room completely transformed. From there, all that was left to do in this space was an update to flooring, new lights and some bright French doors which gave access to a custom-created vertical garden and a backyard space behind the house.

The next unique space came from what was formerly a spare bedroom. Here, we created a brand new art studio for Heather, who had previously used an outdoor shed to create and store her work. In this room, we evened out the floors with new concrete flooring and built a custom double desk space as well as canvas storage. The room itself was bright and open, and had all the space for Mom-and-me painting parties or some solo work.

As the home began to take shape as a boho-style artist cottage, we made sure to include some special touches in the couple’s daughter’s room too. In this space, two custom murals were created. One transformed the far wall into a large rainbow and on the opposite side of the room, the closet doors were reborn into a tribute to her name: Wren. The last custom part of the room came in the form of her very own (custom-created!) house bed, made by our carpentry team. The bed was built with storage at the bottom and was decorated with artificial flowers all around.

With living spaces, kid spaces and work spaces all taken care of, the last room to personalize and renovate was the main bedroom. Here, our main focus was the creation of a faux-canopy draping over the couples’ bed. This was done with the use of curtain rods and sheer fabric, which, when tied together, created the illusion of a beautiful canopy cover.

Each piece of design was carefully selected to fit in with this little family’s aesthetic preferences and lifestyle. From light fixtures to artwork and furniture, the home came together as a perfect little retreat to relax in, create art in, and grow together in the next phases of their lives!

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